Friday 30th may 2008
The phone rings.
„Where are you?”
My brother. I wonder why he is asking, but I know he must have a good reason. I just don’t get it!
„Why are you asking? Home, of course!”
„Well, aren´t you supposed to be in Portugal?”!
Oh God! Yes, Portugal! In fact we were already supposed to have been in Portugal for about 2 weeks, but in the meanwhile I have bought a gallery, Kevin had a concert in the UK, I had a portrait commission to finish, collect a sold painting from my old gallery and visit my parents somewhere in the North. And well, the most important being that we had to check that we don´t leave unfinished things here, all this being the reason why, as my brother called, 2 weeks after we were definitely leaving, we were still home. To be honest, in this very last hour, we were trying to pay all the bills which were left behind in these last few weeks of hyperactivity. In fact it’s a good thing that we regularly go on holidays, at least it forces us to pay our bills!
But here we are, finally, in our motorhome, on the highway to Portugal. With two new guests on board: Kenny & Cartman, saved in the last moment from the greedy hands of the guardia civil… but this is another story.
They will be our travel mascots this year, just as Mary, the Scottish sheep was last year, in our 10 week trip which brought us from the South of Spain to the very North of Scotland, in our great box on wheels called the Boomobile.
The highway that scythes through the Province of Almeria revealed an awful landscape. Kevin saw some satellite photos on the net and said, that the land looks as if it were totally covered with plastic. As he said that, I suddenly had a claustrophobic crisis: I saw myself buried under plastic too. An awful invention these satellite pictures!
My artist´s eye is quite hurt by just a glance at that unaesthetic material covering the land, but apparently they feed a lot of people in Europe with the stuff which grows under the plastic. It could provoke an international catastrophe if they stopped. I just wonder how it is possible that our cutting edge science could not find a more elegant way to make potaoes grow in Spain…
But the worst was yet to come. Initially we wanted to spend the yearly holiday travelling to the North Cape in Norway, but we had so much rain in Britain last year that we didn’t want to take any risk this year, Kevin being totally addicted the sun and me needing good weather to paint outside. This is how we came to choose Portugal. Well, 200 km south of our home in Turre, where a wonderful sun was shining down on our preparations this morning, it started raining. Raining like it does in Spain: like crazy!
The mood in the Boomobile sank like a stone in the watertank, and our new Mascots escaped under our seats, terrorised by the thick air floating around.
It is 19h now, we have stopped for the night on the outskirts of a town called Antequera, between Malaga and Sevilla. The rain has gone and the mood is sunny again, we are having a cosy coffee. Kevin is learning new songs for the Glam Rock night gig he will make in October, the mascots are back in the window and I will paint now!
Au menu tonight: Peanut Satay Chicken …. Kevin cooks!
Followed by the final episode of Season 5 of The West Wing! (The two chicken wings having already been spoken for)